New FA WSL TV deal a 'watershed moment' for women's football, says Lewes director

Lewes director Charlie Dobres has branded the new women’s football TV deal a ‘watershed moment’.

Friday, 26th March 2021, 8:30 am
Lewes Women have plenty to celebrate following the announcement of the blockbuster new TV deal with the FA Women's Super League and the BBC and Sky. Picture by James Boyes

The FA, BBC and Sky agreed a three-year deal worth £7m-£8m per season to broadcast the FA Women’s Super League from the 2021-22 campaign.

The BBC will show 22 games, with a minimum of 22 live games a season being broadcast on free-to-air channels BBC One and Two.

Sky will show up to 44 games, with a minimum of 35 broadcast across their Main Event, Premier League and Football channels, with some matches also broadcast on Sky One and Sky Sports Mix.

Games not selected for broadcast will be streamed live on The FA Player.

The agreements with the BBC and Sky will run until the summer of 2024.

Dobres said: “This is definitely a watershed moment. It’s a watershed moment because of the additional revenue and the exposure.

“We agree that it’s a game-changer because you need to remember that the current deal which is finishing, wasn’t good in terms of revenue but this one is rather different.

“You have not just the money coming into the game, but crucially you have the affirmation that women’s football is a big, fast-growing sport.”

The Rooks compete in the FA Women’s Championship, and teams in the division will receive 25 per cent of the investment revenue from the new TV deal.

Dobres was pleased to see the money distributed fairly and called the deal ‘crucial’ in developing the women’s game.

He added: “There’s been a lot of discussions and Championship clubs have had an input into the allocation of revenue coming in.

“One of the things we didn’t want to repeat from the men’s game, is that the allocation of TV money is far too heavily weighted to the top leagues.

“You’re going to end up with the same mistakes in the men’s game where vast amounts of money are there and you have a distorted marketplace.

“It’s really important that revenue has been shared with the Championship, and in time we’d like to see the revenue shared down to the Women’s National Leagues.

“This is a really crucial opportunity to develop the whole of the women’s game in this country.”